NEGROS Occidental Police Provincial Office (Noppo) director Police Colonel Romeo Baleros confirmed Tuesday, June 25, that alleged New People’s Army (NPA) leader, Virgilio Paragan, was brought in Kabankalan City in Negros Occidental following his arrest last Sunday in Capiz.
According to Baleros, Paragan was brought before the Kabankalan City Regional Trial Court to verify charges against him, but the authorities did not find any warrant of arrest for Paragan in the city.
Baleros said Paragan’s arrest in Capiz could have been from a different case.
The Noppo director said after being brought to Negros Occidental, he is not sure as to who has custody of Paragan.
“Based on the reports, some of Paragan’s victims positively identified him for the murders,” Baleros said.
He added that the suspected NPA commander could have other pending arrest warrants from other courts in the province.
According to PRO-Western Visayas director Police Brigadier General John Bulalacao, Paragan served as commanding officer for the Komiteng Rehiyon-Negros Roger Mahinay Command from 2000 to 2004.
Paragan is also one of Police Regional Office-Central Visayas’s most wanted following multiple murder and attempted murder charges filed against him.
The reported criminal activity forced the suspected NPA leader into hiding, particularly after a string of killings and ambush incidents involving police, the Armed Forces of the Philippines, and Citizen Armed Forces Geographical Unit.
He is also considered a wanted terrorist by the Department of the Interior and Local Government and the Department of National Defense. The government departments have also placed a P1.05 million bounty on the suspected terrorist.
Paragan is the second NPA leader from Negros arrested after National Democratic Front-Negros leader Ka Frank Fernandez was arrested, along with his wife and another person, in Laguna earlier this year.